You stumbled up the stairs behind Rivaille, gasping as your feet tripped against the stairs with every step you took. Ahead of you, Rivaille failed to look back, but you could see an angry grimace on his visage.
As you reached the top of the stairs you felt an angry yank on your arm, eliciting a small whimper upon your part. Rivaille looked back at you for a moment, and you swore that his face took on a slight expression of remorse. But you couldn't be sure, because suddenly you were being pulled forward.
Your footsteps hit the old wooden floorboards harshly, two pairs of footsteps echoing down the hallway irregularly.
At last you reached the door that led to the apartment.
Rivaille practically threw the door open, making you flinch. The fury in this man scared you, in all honesty. Rivaille glanced back at you, eyes half lidded, brow furrowed in frustration.
He held the door open for you, motioning you inside with a nod of his head.
You swallowed thickly and obeyed, eyes downcast as you avoiding Rivaille's pointing gaze.
Rivaille calmly shut the door behind him, then turned to you , bangs partially obscuring his dark eyes. You shuddered at the intense gaze he shot your way.
"I thought you weren't doing the night shifts?" he murmured lowly, but liud enough to be heard.
You stiffened. "Bernard needed the help tonight." You replied in barely a whisper, afraid of speaking too loudly and provoking the temper of this man.
"You could have refused." His voice rose in volume slightly, making you tense.
You backed up a step as he stepped away from the door.
"You risked being seen!" he was speaking loudly now, a growl in the back of his throat.
You felt a bubble of anger rise up in your chest, and before you could stifle it, you were speaking loudly back:
"I don't need you to protect me!" You knew as soon as you saw Rivaille;s expression change you had said the wrong thing. Before you could speak again, he was practically shouting back at you:
"Yes, you do! because you're apparently too brainless and stupid to protect yourself."
You felt the words echo deep inside your chest, hitting you like a punch to the stomach. Those two words stood out to you, echoing and resounding inside your thoughts, recalling memories of old past.
They seemed to grow louder and louder inside your head, until the roar was almost deafening. Your eyes widened, tears forming at the corner of your eyes.
Rivaille didn't see them, instead, he continued to berate you.
"You can't do anything yourself! Everytime I turn around your in some sort of peril, and you know it! You're worthless when it comes to saving yourself!"
Your hands reached up to your ears to block his words, cringing and trying not to listen to his hurtful insults.
"Stop" You whispered almost inaudibly, but he didn't hear you.
He had grown silent now, his breaths coming in even, heavy exhales.
You didn't look at him, hugging yourself gently, his words still piercing your heart and leaving a gasping wound there that begged for relief.
Finally, your forced yourself to move. You pushed past him, bracing yourself against the door and curling your fists against the old broken wood. A single tears escaped down your face, not that he could see.
A shaking hand reached for the doorknob, turning it and slowly opening the door.
"Where are you going?" It was an irritated sigh, no longer furious and wild with anger.
You were leaning heavily on the door. Your voice shook as you spoke.
Rivaille was silent.
A dry laugh escaped your lips, humorless and dour. "I don't see how that's any of your concern. why would you bother with somebody who's as worthless as me?"
Rivaille was silent. You wanted him to respond, you wanted him to reply, yet he did not fulfill your desire. So you continued.
"I'm useless, I know. I am totally insignificant and good for nothing. After all, that's what everybody, including my family, seems to think, so therefore it must be true. So I'll just leave, in hopes of finding some sort of purpose other than bothering you and being the subject of your awful words."
You had hardly taken a step before you felt strong arms wrap around your torso, hugging you tight to a broad chest.
The word was simple, but enough to make your sink into his arms and hold them tight to you.
"You're not worthless"
Fresh tears sprang to your eyes.
"You're not insignificant."
A sob choked your throat.
"You are not a bother."
Your grip on his muscled arms tightened.
"You have a purpose."
The sob that had been forming in your throat escaped, strangled and stifled by your hand.
"You have a purpose to me."
You felt yourself turned around in his arms, hugging you to his chest as tears streamed down your face.
"I'm sorry" he murmured into your hair. "Just...don't go."
You shook your head. "I won't" You whispered. "Not if you'll keep me"
Rivaille closed his eyes, nodding ever so slightly.